Friday, August 27, 2010

Food Waste Friday 8/27

For previous food waste Fridays, click here.

This week was certainly less drastic than The Great Fridge Purge of... A Few Weeks Ago.  Half a can of refried beans, a few rings of cucumber, and half a can of pineapple.

Why can I never manage to use up a can of pineapple before it goes bad?  I love pineapple.  And therein lies the problem.  I'm loath to use it willy nilly, because it's a treat around here.  It's like when I was a kid and let all my markers go dry, because I didn't want to "use them up."

Friday, August 20, 2010

Ain't No Party Like a Scranton Party!

Margaret is one year old!

We're totally excited.

But also a little wistful to see her growing up so fast.

While brainstorming ideas for Margaret's first birthday party, my mom suggested we theme the party around Margaret's favorite TV show.  Our quirky little thing doesn't care for The Wiggles or Max and Ruby or Mickey Mouse.  No, the only TV show to ever have caught her eye is The Office.

So we decided to just go for it and give our one year old an Office themed party.  I had such fun coming up with ways to incorporate the show's many in-jokes into the decor, invitations, food, and even the birthday girl's outfit.  I think Michael Scott, Jim and Pam, and all the others would have felt right at home.

Some details:
3-Hole Punch Margaret

homemade party hat and birthday girl cupcake



passive-aggressive note on microwave

table and homemade vending machine

office supply centerpiece

Pam's sketch of the branch, framed

Princess Unicorn cupcakes (Polly Pockets stuck into cupcakes, with a sprinkle attached to their heads with frosting)

Post-It labels

"Schrute Farm" pickled beets

"Big Tuna" sandwiches

"George Foreman foot" burgers (patties were still on the grill)

Margaret-face cups (Margaret's face Photo Shopped onto a star, cut out, and Mod Podged to white cups)

What's a break room without awkwardly lined-up chairs?

half-inflated brown, black, and grey balloons hung with twine and masking tape

Margaret was so happy to see the cake...

She eventually got over the trauma of being sung to.

And maybe even enjoyed herself a bit.

Or a lot.

from Mama and Daddy

from Auntie Lyss Lyss

from Nana and Grandpa

from Nana and Grandpa

from Nana Karen

from Nana Karen

opening gifts

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: Mood Swings

All taken within a 5 minute block:

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Little Red Margaret Hood

I've been pondering what to dress Margaret as for Halloween this year.  It won't be too much longer before that decision is out of my hands and she has control, so I wanted to have my fun while I still can.

Store-bought costumes were spoiled for me when I was a child, as a result of a very creative and crafty mother and grandma, and I want to try to give Margaret's costumes at least a hint of that homemade touch.

I finally settled on Little Red Riding Hood.  Mostly because I think Margaret would look darling in a little red hood, but also because the legend of St. Margaret being eaten and then regurgitated by a dragon is thought to have influenced the fable.  I thought it was a neat connection.

I got a coupon in the mail from Kohl's the other day for $10 off any purchase.  Fritz and I stopped in yesterday, hoping to pick up some Melissa and Doug toys for cheap.  I wasn't impressed with the selection, so we dejectedly headed for the door.  While passing through the little girls' department, a little red gingham dress caught my eye.  Upon further inspection, it was just perfect for a Red Riding Hood costume.  Even better, it was marked down from $25 to $10.80.  With my coupon, I got it for $0.85.  Yay!

My mom mentioned some sweet little sequined shoes she saw at Wal-Mart, so we picked those up too, for just $9.

$10 in, and all I have left is to make her a red hood and cape.  We already have some white sweater tights.  Not bad.  I'm so excited to see her in the costume, and best yet, she can rewear the shoes and dress afterward at church.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Food Waste Friday

I follow a blog called The Frugal Girl.  I was really inspired recently by one of her recurrent post themes, "Food Waste Friday," wherein she shares all the spoiled food she cleans out of her fridge each week.  Since I'm all about the accountability lately, I thought I'd follow her lead.

It's been a while since I did a massive fridge cleanout, so this is going to be a bit embarrassing to start.  We're pretty good about using up leftovers and fresh ingredients before they spoil, but those jars and bottles of things that can last for years in the fridge?  Ehh, sometimes they become like art fixtures and I just forget about them.

This week:

The pectin, olives, and applesauce have been in the fridge for ages.  It really was time to let them go.  They haven't come back yet, so I guess it wasn't true love.  The root beer is all on my husband.  He has a habit of drinking half a bottle and forgetting about the rest until it's flat.  The cherries, plums, sliced cucumber, half a can of corn, and half a can of refried beans are all my fault.  I went out of town and forgot about them until I got home and saw the science experiments growing in my fridge.

Oh well, there's always next week.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Perfect Play Kitchen

I make no secret of the fact that I hate (hate!) cooking.  The mess, the dishes, the smells, the large margin of error.  Yuck.

I do, however, love children's play kitchens.  Since before Margaret was born, I've been window-shopping online, putting together my dream play kitchen.  There are so many fun and whimsical options out there these days.  Nothing like the plain wooden sink-and-oven with plastic fruit I remember from my Kindergarten classroom.

My favorite kitchen has got to be the Kidcraft red vintage kitchen:

This toaster from Plan Toys fits the style of the kitchen perfectly.

I really like Haba's play foods, because they mirror the things we eat at home:
Pita Sandwich

Deli Sandwich


Tagliatelle Noodles

Farfalle Noodles


Their fanciful desserts are darling:

Petit Fours

Melissa and Doug have some nice wooden basics:
Cutting Fruit

Pantry Products

Fridge Food


They also make some quirkier sets:
Grill Set

Stir Fry



As far as dishes and cooking implements go, I love Ikea's line.  Affordable and realistic-looking:
Plates and Bowls




Tea Set

Clearly, I have a bit of an addiction.  Fortunately, we aren't planning to give Margaret her kitchen until her second birthday, so I have another whole year to feed my obsession.